Coaching in groups creates value and impact for organizations by extending the benefit of coaching to more people beyond an individual. In fostering organizational growth and improved performance, it is an effective approach to supporting global leadership development and peer-to-peer learning and change. It builds collaboration, communication and social skills, as well as capability in strategic thinking, brainstorming, and giving helpful feedback.
How does it work? As with Action Learning, a small group of 4-8 participants commit themselves to a programme of regular coaching sessions held over 4-6 months. The programme follows a clear process that includes a set-up meeting for skills practice and planning, the coaching work, and a final review meeting. Sessions take place in-person, online, or both, as a mix.
Each participant takes it in turns as the client or coachee, with the other group members coaching that individual. Group members have the chance to address their own real, often urgent, dilemmas and challenges, and to explore and find workable solutions and new possibilities. With a diverse mix of participants, the group gets to look at multiple perspectives, evaluate new approaches, and generate some creative ideas.
The entire problem-solving process is experiential, fully engaging and highly practical as new learning and skills can be immediately applied at work. Furthermore, it is an energizing and enjoyable way to learn!
My role as group coach is to guide the process and to create and hold an open, safe space for thinking and learning. I also keep the group on track with regards the coaching principles, which include: working together on equal terms, refraining from giving advice, asking open questions and listening actively, enabling the coachee to come up with fresh ideas, and reviewing progress and the impact of any action taken.
In addition to my being an experienced, accredited (PCC) executive and leadership coach, I am also a trained and certified systemic team coach and action learning facilitator.
“Action Learning is based on the idea that people have an unlimited capacity to learn from experience but a limited capacity to learn from being taught”.
Reg Revans, founder of Action Learning